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purchasing or collecting materials

Posted by countrykitty (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 4, 07 at 9:51

I'm just curious to know where everyone else gets their materials.

I live on 14 acres, 10 of which is wooded. There are 3 kinds of native stone, 5 or 6 kinds of moss, driftwood in the creek and branches in the woods. LOADS of trees shrubs of all kinds. I also have permission from a neigbor to gather from his 50 or 60 acres, including powdery aged manure from his barn for adding to my watering bucket :D.

In such a rural area tho' I can't find local sources for bonsai pots and the more traditional bonsai plants, not to mention that there's not likely to be a bonsai show or display within 2 hours of my house. (I'm a student so finances are limited.)

It's a trade off that I'm comfortable making do with what I have (houseplants, found materials, unusual pottery picked up second-hand) my creations are likely to be unique.

What's everyone else doing?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: purchasing or collecting materials

Hi again.. go look at for a large variety of inexpensive and very strong pots - they're a resin/composite of some kind, soft darkish brown, and indestructible in all weather, as well as looking like unglazed ceramic, but costing a lot less. They also have tools. As far as 'outdoor' trees go, try for absolutely reliable stuff (and do read all their articles, because Brent Walston who owns the nursery has a terrific rep as a grower, teacher and seller. Also look at Dallas Bonsai Gdns for more 'things', for the best info on indoor trees and there are loads of places selling trees and seeds online (but I suggest not looking at Bonsaiboy in NY as you can do better.

RE: purchasing or collecting materials

I like too. Huge selection, fast delivery.

RE: purchasing or collecting materials

I'd like to give the other half of your situation some attention. Chances are quite good that with all the acres of woods and such you have available, there is some great material out there waiting to be discovered and saved into a life of bonsai. You have to resist casting too wide of a net, or you'll end up with stacks of plants that won't ever amount to much. If you keep an eye out and seek out some of the less traveled areas of this property, you just may luck out.
Probably 25 of my ~40 trees were collected within the last 10 years by myself or others. It's very fulfilling to truly mold a plant into bonsai from the wild.

RE: purchasing or collecting materials


RE: purchasing or collecting materials

My favorite source for pots, wire, and other supplies is EBay. I've also ordered some sapling elms that I was very happy with.

About half of my trees I have gathered from my own two acres. Can't beat the price and you don't feel so guilty if you lose the tree. Also, I always look at the back corner of nurseries where they put the less than perfect evergreens. Some of these are great for bonsai. Here is a juniper I bought the other day for $6 that is on its way to being a nice cascade.

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RE: purchasing or collecting materials

Ive actually dug up several small trees that look like cypress! They were in an area with wood chips and I suppose that they sprouted. Collected always seems better because: A. its cheapter and b. its sculpted by the elements and more interesting.]

Although at the local nurseries I have found some great deals...15$ for an Oak sapling, 12$ for a sequoia redwood that I love. They say that you cant buy time...but I disagree - :D

I do love the deals on EBAY. quantity discounts and that saves enormously on the shipping

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